-By Aditya and Subarnodeep
IDIA scholar, Ms. Rinju Kumari, a 3rd-year student at South Calcutta Law College in Kolkata achieved the 2nd highest score in Calcutta University on her fourth semester examinations scoring a whopping 74.4%. Earlier she had also topped her batch in her second semester examination.
Rinju comes from a family of modest means based out of the Beheating Tea Estate, Dibrugarh, Assam. Rinju’s father is employed as a teacher in a local primary school in Dibrugarh. Her stellar performance in her university exams is an embodiment of the vision of Increasing Diversity by Increasing Access (IDIA) Project, whose supporters strive to make legal education accessible to marginalised and underrepresented communities (read more here).
IDIA seeks to increase diversity at otherwise elitist National Law Universities (NLUs) by conducting sensitisations, training marginalized students for the entrance examination to the NLUs (CLAT), and providing them with mentorship and other support. But the CLAT test is often erratic and unforgiving, sometimes causing bright and hardworking scholars to fail to make the cut despite their best efforts. Therefore, it was decided to place certain promising students at traditional law universities and augment their learning as far as possible. Rinju is one such scholar, and her success demonstrates the wisdom of supporting the development of these promising young people.
When asked about her exemplary achievement, Rinju points to her persistence, hard work, and the ever-present support of the IDIA family in enabling her success. She makes sure to study for at least six hours a day for her exams, a level of diligence that is indeed praiseworthy!
When asked about her future plans, Rinju confidently answers, “My tribe is one of the most backward in Assam in all the spheres, be it social, economic or political. Most of the people are illiterate and under the clutches of poverty, and they are unaware of their rights, opportunities, and responsibilities…. [M]y aim in life is to enlighten the people about their rights and opportunities and also [to] help in their upliftment… assist[ing] them to compete confidently with the world outside.”
Rinju is being mentored by Ms. Raji Nagarkar, who is currently involved as the Lead Counsel for LinkedIn. She has also successfully completed an internship at Alipore District Court, Kolkata. The grit and perseverance Rinju demonstrates is admirable, as is the maturity and dedication she has shown to her community. We’ve watched her blossom into an excellent lawyer, and more importantly, a budding leader in her community. The entire IDIA Family congratulates Rinju for her exemplary performance and knows that she will continue to strive toward even greater achievements in the years to come!